Make us your home page

Transformers characters are racist, critics say



Tbd-transformers062509 If you're planning to see Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, be warned that the latest controversy coming out of that flick is not whether Michael Bay should ever be allowed to film another explosion, but rather that twin Autobots Mudflap and Skids are being derided as black stereotypes by critics. Yeah, that's the biggest problem with that movie.

The CGI caricatures, who are hump-backed, brawl-prone, illiterate street-slangers, at least one of whom has a gold tooth, are given "conspicuously cartoonish, so-called black voices that indicate that minstrelsy remains as much in fashion in Hollywood as when, well, Jar Jar Binks was set loose by George Lucas," the New York Times' Manohla Dargis said.

Bay insists there's no problem with the voices Reno Wilson (who is black) and Tom Kenny (who is white and also the voice of SpongeBob Squarepants) gave the characters.

"We're just putting more personality in," Bay told the AP. "I don't know if it's stereotypes -- they are robots, by the way. These are the voice actors. This is kind of the direction they were taking the characters and we went with it."

The direction they should have taken the whole movie? Using digital audio trickery to bring Scatman Crothers back to be the voice of Jazz. Too bad that character was killed in the first one.

[Photo: AP]

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 10:42am]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours